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Car-sized hole from broken water pipe closes road in Valrico

A broken water pipe created a car-sized hole at the intersection of Natures Way Boulevard and Elm Grove Lane in Valrico's Bloomingdale neighborhood on Thanksgiving day. [ Alexander Dawson, special to the Times]
A broken water pipe created a car-sized hole at the intersection of Natures Way Boulevard and Elm Grove Lane in Valrico's Bloomingdale neighborhood on Thanksgiving day. [ Alexander Dawson, special to the Times]
Published Nov. 24, 2017

VALRICO — A large hole that opened in Valrico's Bloomingdale neighborhood on Thanksgiving Day was caused by a broken water pipe, not a sinkhole, county officials said.

The hole swallowed a Mini Cooper-sized chunk of Natures Way Boulevard, at the Elm Grove Lane entrance to the Spring Lake neighborhood, just before 7 p.m. on Thursday.

Hillsborough County spokeswoman Ana Mendez said the break was the result of a "system failure." No homes or sewer lines were affected, and no boil-water advisories have been issued, she said. Hillsborough County Road Maintenance crews evaluated the hole Thursday night and, as of this afternoon, there are no signs it could grow larger, Mendez said.

Maintenance workers are working to repair the hole, which has blocked most of the heavily traveled thoroughfare. Until then, Natures Way Boulevard will remain closed from Eastridge Drive to Moondale Court.

Local motorists driving through the neighborhood should be mindful of additional barricades, directional signs and detour roads, Mendez said.